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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Juneuary Again.....

The snow situation on Mt. Hood and throughout the Pacific Northwest is looking mighty thin.  Apart from a series of storms during Christmas, and a small dusting on MLK Day, we've seen no white stuff the entire month of January.  Adding to our mountain's misery, the weather has been either a streak of unseasonably warm days, or torrential rain - neither of which are good for a dwindling snowpack.  For the third consecutive year, we're experiencing "Juneuary" once again.


Panoramic group shot

Now finally able to ski, and making up for lost time, I've been taking every opportunity to get on the mountain.  On the last Thursday of Juneuary, (oops, I mean January!) though the weather called for toasty temps, and the snow base was minimal, I decided to ride the ski bus up to Mt. Hood anyway.  Hey - it beats being at work!  (I always say, a crummy day skiing is better than the best day working.)


Poor Mt. Hood is looking bare

Due to the poor conditions, my usual ski buddies all stayed home.  All by my lonesome, sliding down a slope, I met up with a group of ladies from my bus.  I knew most of them from past ski lessons.  Seeing my single situation, they invited me to tag along.






Conditions were downright awful.  Our local ski area (ahem **Mt. Hood Meadows**) must've thought no one would be skiing that day, because they didn't bother grooming anything except the bunny slope.  Bumping over frozen mounds of cut-up snow was challenging, to say the least.  One poor lady in our group kept falling on the same run.  Trying to banish the bad ju-ju, she kept going back up and trying again.  But when not only her, but yours truly suffered a wipeout, we decided it was time to break for lunch.  (Luckily, no injuries - nothing was hurt but our pride.) 

I captured my grand biff on the GoPro and posted it here for you to enjoy.  I really don't know what  happened - one minute I was skiing along, and the next I was sliding face first down the hill.  I blame a snow snake!  (And if you don't know what a snow snake is, check out this post)


We decide to try Vista Ridge

Our group sat down to lunch, grousing about the poor conditions, trying to decide if we should go back out for the afternoon.  Now finally able to ski, I didn't want to sit in the lodge for the rest of the day.  I convinced the ladies to try a couple more runs before hanging it up.


We find the best run of the day on Vista!

Someone suggested we try a run off the Vista Lift.  Normally not one of my favorite places to ski at Meadows, but I figured, what the heck.  As my group ascended to the top, we noticed the sky clearing.  By the time we started down Vista Ridge, blue patches were elbowing out the gray clouds.







The snow here was fantastic!  No bumps, sun-softened, and smooth as silk.  We enjoyed our best run of the day.  Conditions were so wonderful, we all boarded the lift, eager to do it again.

We made several trips down Vista Ridge.  Each time the sky cleared a little more, until the top of Mt. Hood towered over the horizon.  I got out my GoPro to capture the grand scenery.  I'm getting much better at holding the pole, and shot a video at an angle I really liked.  My favorite mountain stayed in the background through most of the ride down.  Check it out!


Cold beverages on the patio - great way to end a day of skiing!

My group of friends and I ended up lasting nearly until 3:00, well past our original quitting time.  The day ended with everyone enjoying sunshine and a cold beverage on the patio.

Okay, the snowpack is wearing thin, rocks and stumps are sticking out all over, and snowstorms keep missing the PNW.  But for this one sunny Juneuary day, I had a wonderful afternoon making slushy tracks in what's left of Hood's snow.  Still better than sitting in the office. 

(But, darn it weather gods, send us some snow!)

28 comments:

  1. The lack of snow here in Oregon is serious. Hoodoo never really opened. Now I worry about fires in the summer.
    However, it does look like you ended up making the most of it!

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  2. Hi Linda, Did I hear you say "crapola" when you took a digger? Ha! Looked like a pretty run down Vista Ridge. Mount Hood is definitely hurting for snow - couldn't believe all the exposed ground! We got a bit of snow today and more due overnight. Luckily, we had a good start to our season because January was pretty dry, and the temps have risen over the last week to above freezing.

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  3. I can't believe how little snow you have!

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  4. Oh my! It sure is bare isn't it? I cannot believe we have that little of a snow base. Hoping for snow this spring--lots of it.
    Blessings, Aimee

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  5. Nice crash! And nice smooth run after!

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  6. All that snow is making me envious. :)

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  7. Lovely photos, Linda. Not that much snow but snow nonetheless.

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  8. You've managed to get some remarkably steady footage on that second video. Least said about the first the better!

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  9. Can't argue about your sentiments there, any day out in the snow is better than work, troubel is we have so little of it.

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  10. I am so happy the afternoon skiing was much better than the icy morning... That crash was amazing. I loved the scenery and view of the mountain! Looks like a lot of fun! Great photos, enjoy your day!

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  11. I really enjoyed your images and videos. Your outing seems to have been lots of fun, and it clearly shows in your post!

    Mersad
    Mersad Donko Photography

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  12. It's really not fair you've had so little snow while the New England and Atlantic Canada has gotten so much!

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  13. Looks like so much fun. And you look so happy!

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  14. Looks like lots of fun for those of you who are into skiing...not for me, however. I'm a scaredy cat for ice and snow.

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  15. We areally in the same boat over here with no snow.

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  16. I love the swooshing sound of skis on snow but am stunned by how little snow there is. Friends near Boston are shovelling 5 ft off their driveway and another friend, well north of you in Terrace, Canada, had a dump of 2 1/2 metres. May the weather Gods work their magic soon.

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  17. It is truly shocking the lack of snow up there, isn't it Linda? I drove the Mt Hood Loop this past weekend and only saw about an inch on the road around Meadows, and that was IT. Nothing anywhere else. Sad, really... :(

    Congrats on your top 100 for Photo of the Year. I totally picked yours out when voting too! "Hey, that looks like Lindas pic!"

    Have a good rest of the week!

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  18. Looks like you had a lot of fun but sorry you didn't get enough snow for a good run. Glad you are able to get back on the slopes again :)

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  19. well at least you've had some skiing weather. that go pro is totally cool.

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  20. Perhaps you were a victim of slush turtles! I've heard they bite tires so probably they attack skies too! ;-)

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  21. Aren't go pros such fun !
    Hmm ~ well I will send some of our snow your way that's all we've had for two weeks straight !
    Sure is pretty but it's time it went back to the mountains with you for a while :)))

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  22. Oh probably the weather gods lost their navigator and have been spreading snow somewhere else. Hope that they find it back so you can have more fun. Glad that no one had injury.

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  23. Oh dear! Sounds like you need to be in New England :o) x

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  24. You ski so effortlessly it was fun to watch and yes you are getting better at that camera. It must be a comfortable pole because your arm doesn't seem to get tired. :)

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  25. That looks like a fun day, despite the snow. Maybe Boston could send some of their snow your way?

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  26. We finally got a good accumulation of fresh powder.. thank goodness! It was glum and dismal, icy packed and slick here for a couple of months. The kids are reveling in it, sledding, building snow forts, and today the husband got out the snowmobile for the first time all winter (unheard of in northern MN!)
    Sure hope you get some, too.. I love seeing your ski hill photos!

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  27. You all look like you're having such a great time. What a great way to spend the day.

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  28. I may just need to take up skiing one of these days, so I can enjoy snow! Here in Iowa it just means bad roads and snow shoveling...though we do have beautiful scenery!

    Glad you had a great day on the slopes!

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